The Property Council rails against heritage protection of Dickson flats

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Catherine Carter

THE Property Council of Australia’s ACT Executive Director Catherine Carter says the Council is very disappointed with the decision to retain one of the three Dickson Towers buildings on Northbourne Avenue.

The Land Development Agency has confirmed it will not appeal the planning directorate’s decision to retain the northern building, on the corner of Northbourne Avenue and Morphett Street.

“The Property Council regards this as a very poor outcome for the people of Canberra,” Catherine said.

“While the Heritage Council may hold these buildings in high regard, they are considered an eyesore by most Canberrans.

“These buildings are more than ugly – they are also unhealthy and unliveable. Built in the 1950s at a time when little thought was given to energy efficiency or indoor environment quality, these buildings simply don’t stand up to contemporary standards for buildings and will now impede the realisation of a dynamic, well-considered precinct for the people of North Canberra.

“The public housing tenants of these flats lived with the architectural and aesthetic errors – not to mention outmoded public housing philosophies – rejected by the rest of us decades ago.

“This decision sets a bad precedent for future developments around Canberra if a portion of ageing, poor quality building stock must be retained for history’s sake.

“The Property Council is passionate about retaining the best elements of Canberra’s heritage. However, we also believe that buildings with minimal heritage value, that offer poor amenity and fall far short of today’s sustainability, efficiency or liveability standards must go,” Ms Carter concluded.

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  1. The thrust of this article is that places that poor people lived in are not worthy of protection.

    A strange view of history, distorted by the need (or desire) for profit.

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